Thursday, April 12, 2007

Bureaucracy month.

I tried writing about various countries and their bureaucratic hitches in my novel, of which there were many. Gradually, I edited the majority of such descriptions out. They sound whiney and don't make for the most riveting read.

Here in Morocco, its that time of year again. Office after office, place after place. Two years ago, getting marred to Siham introduced me to Moroccan bureaucracy. We spent two weeks, day after day, going from office, to embassy, to ministerial building, to judge, to religious guy, to the photocopier, to the guy who certifies photocopies, to police stations, to doctors, to lawyers, and each place an average of six times, in order to obtain the hundred documents we needed to be married.

This morning, I took my annual trip to the Police station downtown. I had my documents in a folder to reapply for the residency card. There are always at least two trips involved because I am missing something. In this case, a personal letter from my wife.

My insurance expires in a week. So comes the next stage. Then I have to pay the bills, which requires taking a number and waiting, usually about half an hour.

A poem from my journey.

Bureaucracy bureaucracy,
The product of democracy? Theocracy? hypocrisy?
A permit here, a paper there
A hundred dollars everywhere.
Oh please could someone with me share
This endless red tape of despair
It’s causing me to lose my hair.
Is the journey finished?
The dream retired?
Simply because
My papers have expired.
I’m tired of this.
It never ends.
Just get me to Europe
To see my friends.

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